Put your phone down: The risks of harmful blue light

March 14, 2019 - 3:30 am

KYW Newsradio’s Medical Reports are sponsored by Independence Blue Cross. 

By Dr. Brian McDonough, Medical Editor

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — More evidence suggests you should not be spending all of your time on a computer or electronic devices — which can be especially frustrating if your job is dependent on using a computer or electronic devices.

Computers and smartphone screens use blue light, which has become increasingly concerning because blue light has short wavelengths, and the shorter the wavelength of light, the higher the energy. 

According to researchers at the University of Toledo, blue light can damage vision and speed up the onset of blindness. The exposure can also increase the risk of macular degeneration. 

The report by the journal Scientific Reports suggested a blue light triggers a protein in our eyes that senses light and creates poisonous molecules in the photo receptor cells. Those who question the studies say that long-term studies are required to critically assess potential risks. 

According to leading ophthalmologists, the greatest harm could be when people look at phones glowing with blue light in the dark, when pupils are dilated or enlarged — and everything from the device gets in.